Charles Schwab Mortgage Facts
- Mostly an investment and securities firm, Charles Schwab offers mortgage products
- Provides mortgages on adjustable- or fixed-rate models, for terms of up to 30 years
- Considers jumbo loans a significant product, with several term options
- Has partnered with Quicken Loans rather than offering loans directly
- Offers Investor Advantage Pricing, a discount program for its existing investment clients
- Can pre-approve buyers before they finish the home search
Overview of Charles Schwab
Charles Schwab & Company is primarily an investment and securities firm, headquartered in California and has been in business for 45 years, per its local Better Business Bureau.
The company offers mortgage products to customers in all 50 states through a partnership with Quicken, tailoring the offerings to suit the needs of account holders with its other lines of business.
Overall Review of Charles Schwab
With a footprint that reaches all 50 states, Charles Schwab is a large provider of investment, portfolio management and banking services for U.S. consumers. It also offers mortgages through a partnership with Quicken Loans.
These can be used for a new home purchase or refinancing, and are tailored to investors’ needs. There is a discount program for people who have investment accounts with Charles Schwab.
The institution is not accredited by the BBB covering San Francisco, the location of its headquarters. It has a BBB rating of B- and has received 15 reviews, with an average score of 1/5, the lowest possible. There have been 62 complaints, but publicly available customer feedback is not about the loan portion of the business.
Charles Schwab Mortgage Specifics
Fixed-rate loans are the most predictable kind of mortgage, locking in conditions at the time they are closed to create a standardized pattern of interest rates and monthly payments for their whole duration.
Charles Schwab, through its partnership with Quicken Loans, offers several different types of fixed-rate loans that conform to government county lending limits. Borrowers have their choice of 10-, 15-, 20-, 25- and 30-year terms, with example interest rates lowest for the 15- and 20-year options.
When a home buyer is planning on living in a home for a short period or anticipates increasing their earning potential significantly in the years ahead, an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) may be the most sensible choice. Charles Schwab’s list of ARM versions includes 5/1, 7/1, and 10/1 offerings.
These loans maintain their low initial rates for five, seven, and ten years, respectively, before adjusting every year after that. There are also 5/1 and 7/1 versions which begin with borrowers paying interest only, starting to pay off the balance of the loan later.
Charles Schwab offers its special Investor Advantage Pricing for ARMS under county conforming limits, which is not the case for fixed-rate mortgages.
Jumbo loans, which involve amounts of money more substantial than the conforming limits for the counties where homes are located, are an area of focus for Charles Schwab. Indeed, the company lists these offerings ahead of conforming loans on its website.
As primarily an investing and securities business, the company likely views its services as most applicable to high-earning investors who are seeking more expensive properties.
There is only one term option for fixed-rate jumbo loans from Charles Schwab: a length of 15 years. The ARM version is more flexible, with 5/1, 7/1, and 10/1 interest-only options. All of these jumbo loans are eligible for Investor Advantage Pricing.
Cash-out Refinance Loans
Refinancing a home loan for a higher value and receiving the difference in equity is known as cashing out. This is one way to pay off high-interest debts or make large investments in improving a property. The option of cash-out refinancing shouldn’t be chosen lightly, as Charles Schwab notes on its website.
The financial organization urges its customers to speak with professional advisors in advance of taking out such a loan
Loans for Investors
Working with Charles Schwab as a mortgage lender is mainly a matter for investors. The fact that the company works with Quicken to provide its mortgage products makes this clear, as general borrowers can work with Quicken and not get a third party involved.
Charles Schwab notes that its main advantage is Investor Advantage Pricing, which is a series of mortgage discounts based on assets tied up in investments made through the company.
There are also specialized financial products available, such as interest-only loans, which may be uniquely suited to the holdings of individuals who mainly make money through their investment portfolios.
Charles Schwab Mortgage Customer Experience
The Charles Schwab online mortgage experience is not as in-depth or fully featured as that of more specialized mortgage providers. This is a natural development, as the financial institution does not provide the mortgages itself, choosing to partner with Quicken Loans.
There are some amenities, however, such as answers to frequently asked questions and an expected mortgage rate calculator. Charles Schwab is also much more forthcoming with its expected mortgage rates than some other financial expectations, giving examples of interest rates for its whole suite of products.
The mortgage offerings available from Charles Schwab, encompassing both home-buying and refinancing options, are focused mainly on the needs of investors. By listing jumbo loans before conforming loans, it makes the point that large properties are the norm among its expected customer base.
Furthermore, Charles Schwab noted the potential advantages of paying off an interest-only ARM compared to a more standard payment model if the borrower in question has investments as his or her primary assets.
There is also a mortgage preapproval process called Mortgage First. This is based on providing documentation before the actual process of shopping for the home is complete. Charles Schwab considers the following to be necessary documentation for this approval purpose:
- Credit documentation
- Proof of income
- Information on current assets
Little information is available about the mechanics of receiving a loan through Charles Schwab, such as the average time it takes to close such a transaction. Therefore, it’s unknown whether this norm is faster than the 44-day national average noted by Sallie Mae.
Charles Schwab Lender Reputation
Dealing with Charles Schwab for lending purposes means working with both this financial institution and Quicken Loans. For Charles Schwab’s part, the company is not accredited by the Better Business Bureau office covering San Francisco, the location of the corporate headquarters.
The company’s BBB rating is B-, and it has received 62 BBB customer complaints. Based on 15 starred BBB reviews, it bears a score of 1/5, the worst possible number. The amount of reviews is low compared to other financial institutions that offer mortgages.
Reviewing the consumer feedback reveals that the complaints are focused on the mainline of business offered by Charles Schwab: investment and trading. The issues center on stock portfolios, as well as commercial banking problems with personal accounts.
By the same token, the only government action on file with the BBB against Charles Schwab has to do with stock trading.
- Information collected December 20, 2018
Charles Schwab Mortgage Qualifications
Charles Schwab does not make it clear on its website what kinds of financial statistics one must have to qualify for one of it’s home buying or refinancing products. It does, however, note which ranges of credit scores are considered fair, good or excellent.
Since Quicken is the direct provider of the loans in question, Quicken personnel will be the ones to verify financial soundness and make offers.
|Credit Score||Debt-to-income Ratio||Gift Funds Allowed?||Down Payment Requirement|
|See table below||No maximum specified||Not specified||None specified|
The following are the assessed brackets of credit scores, as noted by Charles Schwab’s expected loan rate calculator.
Charles Schwab Phone Number & Additional Details
- Homepage URL: http://schwab.com
- Company Phone: (800) 308-1486
- Headquarters Address: 211 Main Street, Mail Stop: PHXPEAK 1C486, San Francisco, CA, 94105
- States serviced: Charles Schwab services all 50 states for its mortgage products, which are offered in collaboration with Quicken Loans.